'Ambush Alley' near Duong Diem becomes 9th Division fire base
FIRE SUPPORT BASE JAEGER - "Ambush Alley" is no more. In its
place stands a brand new 9th Division fire base - Fire Support Base
Ambush Alley was the name given to a section of high ground near the
village of Duong Diem on Route 4. The area was one of the worst
of many places the Viet Cong launched violent terror campaigns aimed
at cutting off the People's Road, Saigon's lifeline to the Mekong
To counter this threat the 9th Division initiated Operation PEOPLE'S
ROAD to clear the route of Viet Cong harassment.
The task was not easy.
"Every time I sent my men into that area, they were soon engaged in
heavy fighting," said Lieutenant Colonel Eric F. Antila, 41, of Santa
Fe, N.M., commander of the 5th Mechanized Battalion, 60th Infantry.
"Each time I flew over there my chopper would be machine-gunned."
After a series of vicious battles, however, the 5/60th infantrymen
pushed the VC out of Ambush Alley and returned Duong Diem to
Division engineers immediately began clearing the land and building
the new fire base which now sits on the site of three major battles.
Named in honor of the first American soldier killed in support of
Operation PEOPLE'S ROAD, Fire Support Base Lambert is a tribute to the
men who were determined to take and hold Ambush Alley.
Now that the Viet Cong are gone, the men of the 5/60th have taken on
another task - rebuilding the village of Duong Diem and bolstering the
people's confidence in the Government of the Republic of Vietnam.
"Schools are being rebuilt and reopened that were closed when the
village was under communists control," Anntila said. "Homes and
farms are being reconstructed by the people with the help of the
"Ambush Alley also sits in the center of a major Viet Cong
infiltration route, where men, food and munitions flow from the south
toward Saigon. Now with our fire base directly in their path,
they're going to lose that infiltration route."
arrived rifleman kills 3 VC in 1st fight
FIRE BASE LAMBERT - After two weeks in Vietnam, Private First Class
David T. Griffin was batting 1,000.
While on patrol recently with the 9th division's 5th Mechanized
Battalion, 60th Infantry, near this base 10 miles west of My Tho, he
fired three bursts from his M-16 rifle and killed the first three Viet
Cong he ever had seen.
"I was walking point through some heavy brush near a deserted
village," said Griffin, 23, of Haytteville, Md. "I was being
extra careful because we knew there was a lot of VC activity in the
"As I moved through some dense foliage, I was startled by a VC who
jumped in front of me. I fired a quick burst and he fell into
Before taking a dozen steps, Griffin flushed two more enemy soldiers
from their hiding place.
"I fired a burst at each one as the crashed through the underbrush,"
The patrol advanced cautiously in pursuit of the fleeing VC, but the
search barely got started when Griffin spotted the two enemy bodies on
The dead guerrillas were identified as demolition experts who had been
sabotaging Highway 4.